Singapore is ramping up efforts to develop human capital for the seafaring industry.
A memorandum of understanding (MOU) signed yesterday aims to help develop a future-ready pool of seafarers by arming them with the skills to cope with trends towards digitalisation and automation in the maritime sector.
The agreement was signed by the Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA), Singapore Shipping Association and Singapore Maritime Employers Federation.
It calls for collaboration in identifying the new competencies and skills required by seafarers to operate the next generation of ships, enhancing the training syllabus and developing Singapore as a maritime training hub.
Mr Andrew Tan, MPA chief executive, said: "The face of ports, shipping and the maritime industry is changing with the advent of automation, new technologies and business models.
"This MOU reflects a strong commitment by the Government, industry and unions working together to identify the skill gaps, and to train and upskill the maritime workforce for the future economy."
The agreement was signed at the third Maritime Human Resource Forum, which was held in conjunction with Singapore Maritime Week 2018.
At the forum, a new specialist diploma course in maritime superintendency was also launched.
Funded by SkillsFuture Singapore, the course aims to facilitate the transition of experienced seafarers from sea to shore, or from work on board ships to onshore jobs with the maritime sector.
It will also facilitate mid-career switches to the maritime sector for those who have been working in relevant fields, such as mechanical engineering.
The course is jointly developed by Ngee Ann Polytechnic and representatives of maritime bodies and agencies. Its first intake is in October this year.